August 31,2018

August 30, 2018
August 30, 2018
Quiz – August 29&30
September 1, 2018

Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam

Video Lectures and Test Series for ESE 2019

 Topics list:

  1. National and International Issues on
    1. Economic Development
    2. Social Development
    3. Industrial Development
  2. Energy and Environment
    1. Energy
    2. Environment
  3. Information and Communication Technology
    1. Technology
    2. Application
  4. The Key Initiatives of Government
  5. General Knowledge

Topic 1:Economic development

Launch of India Post Payments Bank

The Prime Minister will launch the India Post Payments Bank (IPPB).

Key Facts:

  • IPPB has been envisioned as an accessible, affordable and trusted bank for the common man
  • It is aimed to help speedily achieve the financial inclusion objectives of the Union Government
  • It will leverage the vast network of the Department of Posts
  • IPPB will offer a range of products such as savings and current accounts, money transfer, direct benefit transfers, bill and utility payments, and enterprise and merchant payments
  • These products, and related services, will be offered across multiple channels (counter services, micro-ATM, mobile banking app, SMS and IVR), using the bank’s state-of-the-art technology platform.

Read more at: PIB

Topic 2 : Environment

The Nilgiri tahr climbs population charts

A recent census has revealed that the population of the Nilgiri tahr (an endangered mountain goat) at the Mukurthi National Park has grown by an impressive 18% in the last two years, from 480 to 568.

Highlights:

  • The population estimation exercise, completed in May, was conducted jointly by the Forest Department and the Department of Zoology and Wildlife Biology, Government Arts College
  • The population also faces several threats.
    • The continuing spread of invasive species of flora, such as wattle and pine, and exotic weeds like scotch broom (Cystisus scoparius) and gorse, which end up diminishing grazing land.

About the Nilgiri tahr:

  • The Nilgiri tahr (Nilgiritragus hylocrius) known locally as the Nilgiri ibex or simply ibex, is an ungulate that is endemic to the Nilgiri Hills and the southern portion of the Western Ghats in the states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala in Southern India.
  • It is the state animal of Tamil Nadu

Read more at: The Hindu

Trapped heat below Arctic surface could melt entire region’s ice: study

The heat trapped below the surface of the Arctic has the potential to melt the entire region’s sea ice, scientists warn.

Key facts:

  • Warmer water that originated hundreds of miles away has penetrated deep into the interior of the Arctic
  • The ocean warming happened in one of the main basins of the interior Arctic Ocean, the Canadian Basin 
  • The effects of sea-ice loss has also lead to increased heat accumulation in the interior of the Arctic Ocean that can have climate effects well beyond the summer season

Read more at: The Hindu

India’s National Redd+ Strategy

Reiterating India’s commitment to Paris Agreement on Climate Change  Union Ministry for Environment, Forest and Climate Change releases India’s National Redd+ Strategy.

Highlights:

  • REDD+ means “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation”, conservation of forest carbon stocks, sustainable management of forests, and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries.
  • The cooperation and involvement of the tribals,  other forest dwelling people and the society as a whole, is crucial for the implementation of the REDD+ strategy.
  • The Strategy is in line with India’s National Action Plan on Climate Change, Green India Mission and India’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to UNFCCC.
  • To enhance efforts for forest conservation and enhance productivity of forest eco-systems.  
  • REDD+ actions at the State level will be coordinated by the committee headed by the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) & Head of Forest Force (HOFF) of the States.
  • REDD+ aims to achieve climate change mitigation by incentivizing forest conservation.
  • The strategy seeks to address drivers of deforestation and forest degradation and also developing a roadmap for enhancement of forest carbon stocks and achieving sustainable management of forests through REDD+ actions.
  • Paris agreement on climate change also recognizes role of forests in climate change mitigation and calls upon country Parties to take action to implement and support REDD+

Read more at: PIB

Topic 2 : Energy

Malaysia takes India to WTO

Malaysia has sought consultations with India under the WTO’s safeguard agreement.

Highlights:

  • The aim of the consultations is to exchange views and seek clarification regarding the proposed measures and reaching an understanding on ways to achieve the objectives
  • The consultations don’t fall under the WTO’s dispute settlement system.

Background:

India had imposed safeguard duty of up to 25 per cent on solar cells imports from China and Malaysia for two years to protect domestic players from steep rise in inbound shipments.

WTO’s safeguard agreement:

Safeguard measures are defined as “emergency” actions with respect to increased imports of particular products, where such imports have caused or threaten to cause serious injury to the importing Member’s domestic industry.

Read more at: ET

Enhancing Innovation for the Clean Energy Transition

The Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Ministry of Science and Technology, and the International Energy Agency (IEA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Enhancing Innovation for Clean Energy Transition.

Highlights:

  • The MoU seeks to deepen co-operation in support of clean energy innovations to accelerate the research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) of clean energy technologies in India
  • It will help support the generation of data for policymaking and improve knowledge of good policy practices for innovation in India and around the world.
  • It will ensure cooperation for sharing of energy policies on RD&D and sharing of best practices on data collection and analysis.
  • MoU has a provision for activities such as training and capacity building and accelerating energy innovation by identifying sources of finance

Read more at: PIB

Topic 3 : ICT

National Mission on GeM

National Mission on Government e Marketplace (GeM) will be launched on 5th September 2018 to accelerate the adoption and use of GeM by major central Ministries, State Governments and their agencies.

Highlights:

  • The aim of the National Mission is to promote inclusiveness, transparency and efficiency in public procurement and achieve cashless, contactless and paperless transaction.
  • It will increase overall efficiency and lead to cost saving on government expenditure in procurement.
  • The GeM platform provides online, end to end solution for procurement of commonly used goods and services for all Central Government Departments and State Governments. Public Sector Units and affiliated bodies.

Read more at: PIB

Project Navlekha

Google has unveiled Project Navlekha ( a new way to write) to make online content relevant for more Indian users especially in local languages.

About Project:

  • It will quickly render any PDF with Indian language content into editable text, overcoming issues that usually occur when you try to copy text in Indian languages from a PDF.
  • The project aims to bring 135,000 local language publishers online by making web hosting smooth and simple.
  • It will allow local publishers who do not have websites to make their offline content fit for online publishing in less than a minute
  • The project will provide a handy online publishing tool for local language newspapers and content companies—90% of which do not have a website.
  • It also comprises tool that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to allow publishers to simply scan documents or PDFs and create instant web pages on the platform.
  • Under Navlekha project, Google will help these publishers to receive training and support and a branded page domain for the first three years.
  • The registered publishers on Navlekha will also be provided with free web hosting, along with a branded domain for three years. They’ll also have AdSense support to begin monetising their content.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 4: The Key Initiatives of Government

One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme

  • The scheme promises equal pension to military personnel retiring in the same rank with the same length of service, regardless of the date of retirement.
  • The scheme is effective July 1, 2014, with 2013 as the base year.
  • Only those who retired before the plan kicked in would be entitled to OROP.
  • The estimated cost to exchequer is expected to be Rs 8,000 to 10,000 crore and will increase in future
  • The government has proposed a review every five years.

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